Whatever you do, don't ask me why we're not doing this yet. It seems like a ridiculously simple idea, yet somehow, the largest and most effective sorting industry has yet to get in on the recycling game.
Yes, I'm talking about the post office. Sure, they've got their problems, but you can't say that they aren't awfully good at making billions of little bits of stuff go to the right places. And, really, what is recycling (and reuse) but getting little bits of stuff to the right places. Sherwood Forlee submitted the "Just Mail It" program as a "greener gadget" at the Greener Gadgets conference, and I recently found it and was struck by the simplicity.
I told Sherwood that this would be even simpler with an embedded RFID tag, and he said that, indeed, would be a slightly better solution, if the post office was ready to accept and read them. But the idea is the same...simply have small recyclable items with high resale values dropped into the mail box for recycling. Yes, it would decrease the per-phone recycling profits (and yes, they do make a profit on phones), but it would greatly increase the number of phones recycled, and reduce the age at which devices finally find their way out of junk drawers.
It occurs to me that this could be expanded beyond cell phones as well. Though, with exploding laptop batteries, I think they might have to be excluded. But for small electronics of the kind that invariably end up sitting in junk drawers for a decade before finally hitting the landfill, this is a solution that I think is (hopefully) convenient enough for people to actually participate in.
written by Philip, February 14, 2008
written by Lawrence, February 14, 2008
written by Gail Nickel-Kailing, February 17, 2008
written by Mike Critelli, February 22, 2008
written by Dr. Ed Domanskis, April 02, 2008
written by Recycle Mobile Phones, February 13, 2010
written by Mountainland Applied Tech, September 28, 2010
written by Alan, December 14, 2010
written by Selling your Mobile, February 10, 2011
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